Blog for Zip line Attraction in the Smoky Mountains

Located in Pigeon Forge, TN and near Gatlinburg and Sevierville.


5 Great Ways To Cool Off In The Smokies

By Ross Bodhi Ogle
Posted on August 18, 2020

Schools are starting back up all over the country, but there's still plenty of summer left for folks visiting the Great Smoky Mountains. That means daily highs can still easily reach the 90s, with heat indices topping out close to 100 degrees. So working in at least one way to stay cool during a visit to the Smokies is probably not the worst idea. You might even consider coming up with a cool stop every day of your trip. If that sounds good to you, read on, and we'll pass along some of our best ideas for beating the heat when you're in the mountains of East Tennessee.

1. Waterparks

These days, the Smokies have two outdoor waterparks to help guests not only stay cool but have a lot of fun in the process. One is Dollywood's Splash Country, which has been in operation adjacent to the original Pigeon Forge theme park for some 20 years. The 35-acre site is packed with all kinds of water slides and rides as well as a wave pool, lazy river course, kids' areas and amenities like locker rentals, merch shops, eateries and cabana rentals.

This summer, the Smokies got a new waterpark, Soaky Mountain, which is located off Tenn. Hwy. 66 in Sevierville. It features many of the same types of water-based attractions as Dollywood, including slides, a wave pool and an adventure river. There's also a simulated surfing feature and a water obstacle course, not to mention similar guest amenities as Splash Country.

2. Hotel and motel pools

If you choose to stay in a hotel or motel, chances are you have a built-in cool-down opportunity in the form of a swimming pool. Whether it's a national chain or a locally based property, most lodgings have a pool of some size for their guests. These are convenient for anytime access, especially at night, when most area attractions are closed. Some resort properties have indoor pools or feature amenities such as water slides at their pools. One place in particular, Wilderness at the Smokies in Sevierville, has an entire indoor waterpark located on the property, giving their guests year-round good times.

3. National park swimming holes

If you're looking for a more natural approach to cooling off, consider venturing into Great Smoky Mountains National Park for a dip in a good old-fashioned swimming hole. Two of the more popular destinations are the Townsend Y, a forked section of the Little River where swimmers have been gathering for decades to enjoy the site's refreshing and accessible waters. Another location is The Sinks, located 12 miles west of the Sugarlands Visitor Center on Little River Road. Swimmers often gather in the basin at the foot of the short waterfall there. One thing to note is that even on the hottest summer days, the waters flowing through the national park can be quite brisk. It's one of the most sure-fire ways to beat the heat of summer.

4. Tubing and rafting

Folks have been tubing the Little River and the Little Pigeon River for about as long as tourists have been coming to the area. Probably longer. Townsend, TN, is the area's tubing hotspot. That's where you'll find multiple outfitters that will rent you a professional-grade inner tube, transport you to a put-in site and let you float lazily down the cool waters of the Little River for hours at a time, depending on the package you purchase. Similarly, you'll find several whitewater rafting companies that operate on a number of regional waterways, including the Big Pigeon, Nantahala and Ocoee Rivers. Professional guides usually take groups of six to eight on rapids-filled journeys from the put-in point to the company's respective outpost. They usually book half- or full-day packages, and paddling instruction is included.

5. Cool attractions

Many local attractions are cooling by nature. This includes almost any indoor attraction, including music theaters. Some attractions, though, are especially geared toward cooler temperatures. These include Ober Gatlinburg, which operates an indoor ice skating rink year 'round, and Pigeon Forge Snow, which is an indoor multi-lane snow-tubing course that is also open all year.

And believe it or not, Smoky Mountain Ziplines is cool in multiple ways. It's just a cool thing to do in the first place, and when you're ready to zipline Sevierville, you'll beat the heat by flying through the air at high speed with the wind in your hair.


This content posted by Smoky Mountain Ziplines. Visit our home page, for more information on zipline adventures in the Smoky Mountains.

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